900 cut off after cable slashed

ABOUT 900 residents from Innes Park to Bargara were disconnected from civilisation yesterday when a tree lopper cut into Telstra's fibre optic cable.

It is unknown when phones will be reconnected with one resident saying she was told not to expect her phone back until Tuesday.

Rifle Range Road resident Karen Goode said she thought her internet was playing up yesterday when she could not connect.

However when she found the problem was her phone line, she called Telstra, which said the problem could take up to five days to fix.

“This is just so frustrating,” Mrs Goode said.

“They have diverted my calls to come to my mobile at no extra cost, but what about when I want to make a call?

“I will be charged for every local and long distance call I need to make from my mobile.”

Telstra area general manager Barbara Wells stressed the damage was being repaired as quickly as possible.

“We are hoping for it to be fixed by tonight (Friday),” she said.

“We are not anticipating it will take much longer than that; they will work until it is fixed.”

Ms Wells said one fibre optic cable had been completely severed and another had been nicked.

“This was not done by Telstra; it was a third party contractor,” she said.

“We are doing all we can to get the lines back up.”

Bargara's Zarraffa's Coffee Shop owner Kath Baldwin said she was without EFTPOS and internet for the first half of yesterday.

“I usually do a lot of banking and MYOBing, so hopefully people will understand that we couldn't do that at all today,” she said.

Ms Baldwin said she heard the lines were expected to be back up by 7 o'clock tonight.

“We offer Wifi here and we had to put up a sign saying it wasn't available this morning,” she said.

“I hope it's back up by tomorrow or we might lose quite a bit of business without our EFTPOS working.”

Ms Baldwin said she also lived in Bargara, meaning both her business and home lines were down.

“This morning when I found out I just thought: ‘Here we go again,' when I saw the internet wasn't working,” she said.

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